Vegan and vegetarian diets in the elderly
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Helen Simpson, Dietician

We are constantly seeking to improve the ways in which our menus contain the right amount of balanced nutrition and variety. To extend our capabilities in this area of resident services we have welcomed expert dietician Helen Simpson to Avery. She will help develop sets of seasonal menus that incorporate good balance and variety and also advise on nutrition texture, flavours, and carbohydrate and fibre content.

Graduating from Kings College London in 1991, Helen moved to the Royal Naval Hospital in Gosport, becoming the Head of Dietetic Service. After then bringing up two daughters, she qualified as a teacher and spent six years at a residential school for physically and mentally disabled children, followed by the Portsmouth NHS Trust in the paediatric department. She then worked for North Hampshire Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) as part of their Enhanced Care Home Project.

“I am excited to have joined Avery, as my work with chefs and kitchen staff within the care environment has been very rewarding. Providing food to meet the needs of all residents in a care home is not an easy task, and I have learnt a great deal working with Simon and the Avery chefs over the last few months. The role of a dietitian is to ensure that the provision of food and the dining experience is maximised. Firstly, to meet the nutritional needs of the resident, and secondly to ensure that the social and emotional aspects of eating are recognised and provided. We have been able to combine skills to achieve a menu cycle and a standard of food provision which allows for adaptation for the most nutritionally vulnerable residents but also a wide-ranging and exciting dining experience for all. I look forward to the upcoming Head Chef Workshops to support our progressive and exciting menu planning!”

Article by Simon Lawrence, Group Culinary Manager, for Welcome Home Issue 11.

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